How to Make a Japanese Boy Paper Doll

Written by matt scheer
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How to Make a Japanese Boy Paper Doll
Japanese boy paper dolls are an ancient tradition. (Samurai warrior image by patrimonio designs from

Paper dolls are an ancient Japanese tradition. Often, they imitate full-figure dolls made to depict characters in stories. Paper dolls are stiff, paper forms to which their makers attach different paper faces, costumes and accessories. Japanese boy dolls often come with Samurai costumes, swords and their own miniature doll.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Poster board
  • Japanese boy costume images
  • Scissors
  • White paper
  • Markers

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    Japanese Boy Form

  1. 1

    Draw the outline of a boy on a piece of poster board.

  2. 2

    Cut the form out of the poster board.

  3. 3

    Make as many boy forms as you wish. Construct different shapes and sizes or make them all the same.

    Faces, Clothes and Accessories

  1. 1

    Gather pictures of Japanese faces, as well as traditional costumes and accessories, from books or the Internet.

  2. 2

    Trace the poster board boy forms onto white paper and draw faces, costumes and accessories onto the paper outlines based on your image models.

  3. 3

    Colour the images with markers.

  4. 4

    Draw rectangular tabs at key points around the faces, clothes and accessories that will enable you to attach the pieces to the Japanese poster board boy forms when you cut them out. For example, a tunic should have a tab on each shoulder and on both sides of the stomach.

  5. 5

    Cut out the faces, clothes and accessories, including the tabs. Position all the cutouts on the poster board boys, securing them with the tabs, to complete traditional Japanese boy paper dolls.

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